Now that we’ve turned the page on August’s Primal Challenge, we’re digging into some of our “regular programming,” including news highlights. We like keeping a finger on what’s new and novel – and occasionally outrageous. This one definitely fits the latter. (Hint: Are you sitting?) A few weeks ago the Archives of General Psychiatry reported the following: “Antidepressants have recently become the most commonly prescribed class of medications in the United States.” Yikes, yowza, criminy, uff da! No foolin’, folks. According to the findings, “The rate of antidepressant treatment increased from 5.84% … in 1996 to 10.12% … in 2005.” Want hard numbers? Approximately 27 million people in the U.S., the report says, used antidepressants in 2005.
When all was said and done, yesterday’s post turned out to be a bit of a downer – at least for me. I literally felt the crushing weight of the preponderance of Conventional Wisdom bearing down on me as I wrote, and the light-hearted banter was all I could muster to keep from total despair. Even though I tried to illuminate the conclusion with a glimmer of hope, I almost felt like retreating to some dark dank place to set up shop and live out my days like some Primal Grok-Kurtz amalgam. The locals would whisper and tell tall tales, sure, but at least I’d be free to eat fat, munch protein, and abstain from excess carbs. Maybe Eades would send in a band of hapless recruits to retrieve me. Maybe they’d bear news that the war was ending and, though we may not be necessarily winning, we were at least making it respectable. Or maybe I just watched “Apocalypse Now” again. Have I gone temporarily mad? Perhaps, but that’s what fighting against an entrenched, illogical enemy will do to a person.
In previous posts and with offhand comments, I’ve mentioned our (mostly) diametric opposition to Conventional Wisdom. I say “mostly” because when it comes to diet, there are bound to be a few areas that everyone agrees with. Real food that doesn’t come in a box is best – I can’t think of any diet book or nutritional “expert,” vegan or carnivore alike, that would say differently. Vegetables can and should be enjoyed freely – I’d even wager that most Primal eaters consume far more vegetables than your average pasta vegetarian. And, while we’re not fruitarians (you’d probably have to go back three or four million years to find a frugivorous hominoid that may be a common ancestor), we modern Primals do eat reasonable amounts of certain fruits. The areas where we virulently disagree – on saturated fat (and dietary fat in general), on red meat, on grains and legumes – are incredibly divisive. You can shun processed foods and eat organic and no one will argue against it, but once you bust out the jar of freshly rendered lard, the bacon, and the eight egg omelets while failing to produce a single cereal grain-based item, everyone becomes a nutritionist/cardiologist/dietitian.
This story comes from reader Melissa. Her personal tale of going Primal was sent in during this season’s Primal Blueprint Health Challenge. She is the first of four entrants that will be part of the first round of drawings for the ongoing Primal Blueprint Real Life Stories contest. If you have a Primal story that you would like to share visit this page for all the details!
Reading all the amazing stories this week, I’m so impressed with all the weight people have lost because of primal living. My own story isn’t about dramatic weight loss, but underscores that the primal diet can address a variety of health problems caused by our modern diets.
A couple months back erstad17 started a forum thread. With a simple question (“Wondering if there are any others in the Pacific Northwest?”) and a little leg work the first Primal Blueprint meet-up event was held. It brought people together that hardly knew each other to share Primal stories, food and each other’s company. And by all accounts it went swimmingly. (Last I heard they’re planning on doing more in the future.) I was thrilled to hear about the event and even more excited to learn that they’d be taking and sending in photos and recipes from the party (see below).
I’ve discussed the importance of forging relationships for social wellness and the power of connecting with others in the past. I can’t tell you how pleased I am that Mark’s Daily Apple is in some small way encouraging people to get together, learn from one another and have a little fun in the sun. We all know the benefits of play. What better way to do it than with other Primal Blueprinters?
As my post last week stated, this is just the beginning. Because no matter how much fun all this virtual stuff we do is, it pales in comparison to actually meeting and spending time with people face-to-face. This is why I am looking forward to holding a meet-up here in Los Angeles at some point and why Primal retreats are a dream of mine. In the meantime I encourage all readers that are interested in connecting with other PBers to drop a line in the forum (Meet and Greet section) and form your own local meet-up. If any future meet-ups do take place I’d love to hear an account of it. Send in your stories, photos, recipes and video footage and I’ll publish it on MDA.
Many thanks to everyone that participated in the Seattle Primal Blueprint Meet-Up – for your mouth-watering recipes, your photos and for showing us all how it can be done! Thank you.
Here is the email I received from the group:
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